Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Kendra Leigh Castle "Dark Awakening"

Dark Awakening is the story of Tynan MacGillivray and Lily Quinn. Tynan is a hunter for the Ptolemy clan in search of a seer that will help them solve murders that are happening inside of their clan.
Going into this book I had preconceived notions that Tynan would be this powerful shifter whom was greatly respected by his clan. Not. This is the first thing I enjoyed about this book. The author instantly snatches you out of normalcy. She introduces you to a male character that is not the biggest and baddest around. I am not saying Tynan isn’t tough and a force to be reckoned with, because he is, but most readers are used to the main male character being someone of importance within the core group. In this case Tynan is the lowest of the low, in Ptolemy clan pecking order that is. This, in itself, was enough to put me on Tynan’s side.
[Lily Quinn starts off as a regular human that may be of importance to the Ptolemy Queen who sends Tynan to find and return with her.]
The book begins with a definition of the different clans and bloodlines. After seeing this I was a bit apprehensive that I wouldn’t be able to keep up with the clans without having to flip back and forth. After the fact I can say I only had to flip to the front twice. To further support this idea of clans Kendra Leigh Castle (KLC) inserted the concept of sigils. These were tattoos that each clan member that identified which bloodline they belonged to.  In the case of Tynan he possessed one that marked him as a low caste and intertwined with this one was the Ptolemy symbol, which identified him as a servant of that clan. It was very reminiscent of Blade, but instead of only familiars wearing them everyone had one.
I enjoyed the character make up of Lily as well as Tynan. There were aspects of Tynan that were hard to stomach, but further supported how loyal his character was. i.e. his blind devotion to Queen Arinsoe. I loved Lily because she wasn’t content to be led around by Tynan and blindly accept his assistance. She wanted to know where she was going, why she was in danger, etc. It took over two pages for Tynan to talk her into accepting his help. To me her reactions and responses were extremely realistic. I found myself thinking that is exactly what I’d say.
In my opinion, the most important plot device the author employed was the use of boogeyman characters we are already familiar with i.e., Dracula, Nero, and Lilith. She stayed true to their reputations except for Lilith. (Going any further would require me to put up a Spoiler alert).
Although, it’s going to sound cliché my favorite part of the book was the end. Things fell into place exactly as I hoped. Throughout all of the running and trying to discover the truth of Lily’s background, KLC found time to insert supporting characters that I hope will have their own stories. The last thing I will mention is the subject of the love scenes. There aren’t a lot of love scenes, but at the point in your reading when you notice there hasn’t been one it happens. I give this a high rating just for the world KLC created.

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